After it was reported that the Israeli security establishment believes last week’s spillover fire incidents were in fact deliberate rocket fire, Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman announced today that Hezbollah was behind the shootings.
One of the rockets fired into the Golan this week Photo Credit: Channel 2 News
“Regarding the rocket fire in the north, it was not spillover,” Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Monday at a party meeting for Yisrael Beiteinu shortly before the opening of the Knesset’s winter session.
Lieberman accused Hezbollah of firing rockets at the Golan Heights this past weekend, claiming that the terror organization decided to not include Assad in its plan.
“This was intentional rocket fire executed by a cell operated by Hezbollah, which did this in isolation from the Assad regime,” Lieberman said two days after security officials concluded that the shooting was deliberate.
“Nasrallah’s orders were to exclude Assad from the planned rocket fire. Therefore, I call on Assad’s regime, which we hold responsible for all that happens on Syrian soil, as well as the Russian forces, to restrain Hezbollah,” added the Yisrael Beiteinu chairman.
Lieberman Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel, Flash90/Channel 2 News
“This is another example of why they should be expelled from Syria as soon as possible,” he stressed. Lieberman claimed, “Hezbollah is excluding Assad as a means of dragging us into war in Syria.”
On Saturday night, hours after the rockets were fired, sources in Israel’s defense establishment assessed that contrary to the IDF’s official position, the rocket fire had been deliberate rather than spillover fire.
Senior security officials argued that the multiple incidents last week were intentional and could not have been spillover fire, citing factors such as the number of rockets launched, the unusual times of day and the fact that there was no fighting going on during the launches.
Yet, the Syrian regime provided its own explanation for the shootings, telling the UN that Israel had itself asked rebel forces to shoot into its territory in order to justify carrying out attacks in Syria. The “continued acts of aggression,” Syria said, could have “dire consequences.”